India Inc. lauds online farm market plan

India Inc. on Thursday welcomed the government approval to set up an online national agriculture market through an Agri-Tech Infrastructure Fund as well as a new national irrigation scheme.

“Promotion of national agricultural market through Agri-Tech Infrastructure Fund is a step in the right direction as it will step up reforms in the agricultural marketing sector,” Federation of Indian Chambers of Commerce and Industry (Ficci) president Jyotsna Suri said in a statement here.

“Unifying the national market through e-platform will give higher transparency and better market access at better prices for farmers,” she said.

The government allocated Rs.200 crore for three years to set up the online agriculture market by integrating 585 wholesale markets across India.

The irrigation scheme will have an outlay of Rs.50,000 crore over a period of five years beginning the current fiscal.

The allocation for the current financial year is Rs.5,300 crore.

“With nearly 50 percent of Indian agriculture being rain fed, substantial investments in irrigation was the need of the hour, which this scheme seeks to address,” the Ficci president said.

“The best part of the scheme is its decentralised nature that will provide states with flexibility in designing the implementation,” she added.